Sunday, February 21, 2016

VOTE : Have you changed your mind about the EU referendum?

A few months ago, I posed the EU referendum question in a readers' poll, and was quite startled that there was an overwhelming vote (in the region of 85% to 15%) in favour of Remain.  Perhaps that shouldn't have been a surprise on a pro-independence blog, but I had asked a similar question back in 2011 (albeit when the blog had far fewer readers) and found a narrow majority were in favour of leaving the EU and rejoining EFTA instead.

I thought it might be interesting to repeat the exercise, because we now know the package we'll be voting on, the date of the referendum, the Rogue's Gallery of Tories that will be lining up on both sides, and there's also been a long-overdue discussion about the fact that an unintentional side-effect of Brexit would be a substantial and more-or-less automatic increase in the Scottish Parliament's powers.

You can find the voting form at the top of the sidebar (desktop version of the site only), and the poll will close overnight.

31 comments:

  1. As long as we're part of the UK, I want us in the EU if for no other reason than I do not want the Tories having complete say over certain laws and human rights in this country. Upon independence, I'm open to the EFTA.

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    1. Agreed.

      I'd be wary of being in the UK without the protections of the EU (socialism by the back door).

      There's a great deal about the EU that I don't like, but the Tories' determination to rid us of internationally agreed Human Rights worries me hugely.

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  2. I don't know how to vote because I don't understand the significance of Prime Minister's deal and I don't like the treatment of refugees by the U.K and the E.U.

    I also don't understand the SNP's position on the Prime Minister's deal, only that they want to remain in the EU.

    Can you tell me more about the "substantial and more-or-less automatic increase in the Scottish Parliament's powers." if the U.K leaves the E.U.?

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    1. All matters that are not specifically reserved to Westminster are automatically deemed to be devolved to the Scottish Parliament, and Westminster is (in practice if not in theory) barred from legislating on those matters by the Sewel Convention. But there is no Sewel Convention that applies to Brussels - EU law extends massively into devolved areas, and the Scotland Act ensures that any action by the Scottish Parliament or Scottish Government which is not consistent with EU law is illegal. Brexit would therefore remove a huge constraint on Holyrood's powers.

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    2. Glasgow Working ClassFebruary 21, 2016 at 7:00 PM

      Brexit would remove Britain from this mafia run EU. They must be shitin themselves if we leave. The whole lot of pariahs could go if the individual countries follow us. Trade and cooperation is all we need as was the original plan. Sturgeon is a groveller to the EU. Makes ye scunnered listening tae her.

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    3. "Independence would remove Scotland from this mafia run UK. They must be shitin themselves if we leave."

      FTFY

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    4. "...and the Scotland Act ensures that any action by the Scottish Parliament or Scottish Government which is not consistent with EU law is illegal."

      Brexit would not directly change that section of the Scotland Act.

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    5. That point has occurred to me, but even if the anomaly wasn't quickly tidied up (which it probably would be), I would be surprised if the courts don't interpret that section as redundant.

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  3. That's very interesting. Can you give me an example of this in practice?

    Would you happen to know about E.U. treaties with other countries with regard to fisheries?

    This issue cropped up during the Scottish referendum.

    For example, I read that one of the reasons Norway adopts E.U. legislation and makes regular payments to the E.U. which goes to poorer countries of the E.U. is so they can get access to fishing in E.U. waters, and vice versa.

    Would a devolved Scotland, outside of the E.U. be able to negotiate a better deal with regard to fisheries?

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    1. Norway is a member of the EEA (via EFTA) rather than the EU so that they can have access to the single market without having to be part of the Common Fisheries Policy.

      Fisheries policy is a very good example of what I'm referring to, because in spite of being nominally devolved it's currently more or less completely controlled by the EU. In the event of Brexit, devolution of fisheries policy would become meaningful.

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  4. I am a scot living in England, I'll vote to leave, and hope we get pulled out of Europe, so we gan get another referendum. But when Scotland becomes independent I personally wouldn't want to join Europe. And to be honest what changed my mind about the EU was the Greece's and the way the Syria migrants where being treated.

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  5. I see in the poll you are conducting it's currently 87% Remain. But with all due respect to the other readers of this blog there is a large proportion of political anoraks here, myself included, who may well be happy with a Scots Remain and English Leave vote. Whether the UK remains or leaves, there will be a stark difference between the countries.

    Left wing misgivings about the EU (poor treatment of Greece, TTIP, rumours of corruption) are relatively recent but many in Scotland, perticularly the Highlands, have reason to be grateful about EU funds. The UK may be a net contributor to the EU but the EU has shown itself to be better at supporting less favoured UK areas than London has.

    Also many of us have made the judgement we'd rather be with Europe than the UK, since Tory rule stretches as far as the eye can see. It's telling that Boris Johnson is looking like the man of the future, and is waiting till last to announce his EU referendum position which is widely touted to be Leave.

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  6. 26 minutes ago he came out for Leave.

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    1. But it sounds like he's going to limit his active campaigning. If he led from the front and took part in TV debates he could turn this referendum on its head - but it looks like that may not happen.

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    2. That could well be him being shrewd. There may be a majority of Conservative MP's who are against. Their party grassroots seems to be against. The referendum should hole UKIP permanently to the greater benefit of the Conservatives. Boris is now positioned to secure a maximal personal following when CMD goes.

      If he was the real face of the No's and they lost ( and the EU will be vocal and loose with the petty cash here too ), it would be more difficult for him to capitalise on the position he took.

      I do not believe England will vote to leave.

      So I think its pure politics.

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  7. I was mildly in favour of the EU during the referendum. And now probably voting to leave.
    Leaving is the more democratic option because trying to change the EU by democratic means will be almost impossible, due to its size.
    I don't really want socialism by the back door. Just improvements to welfare system.

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    1. If we leave and are still part of the uk, then we have no protection for changes they may make to..

      Disability protection
      Human rights
      Employment law

      Given what they have done to pensions and rights to strike, they will make changes to all of the above that are detrinimental to the majority of us in Scotland.

      As far as I'm concerned, if you want independence, we decide on EU membership after we get independence.

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  8. Betfair used to have a facility to see a graph of odds over the previous month or so but annoyingly they seem to have axed it, which is a shame as it would have been interesting to see the effect of Boris weighing in. Currently most of the bookies are showing 1.4 decimal odds for Remain and 2.75 for Leave, which implies Remain is the favourite.

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  9. Glasgow Working ClassFebruary 21, 2016 at 7:59 PM

    A vote will cast to stay. Many people don't realise the origins of the EU. It has kept the peace since the Coal Iron & Steel Confederation was set up in the 1950's. This a good reason to stay.

    I expect we will have scare stories aplenty.

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    1. Glasgow Working ClassFebruary 21, 2016 at 8:00 PM

      A vote will be cast.

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    2. Glasgow Working Class 2February 21, 2016 at 8:31 PM

      Ok pretend GWC I will post as GWC 2. There is no need for scare stories but they will come from those with their fingers in the till.

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  10. Glasgow Working ClassFebruary 21, 2016 at 8:24 PM

    What the stay mob are not listening to is the the Naws saying let this be just a fair trade deal as it was supposed to be originally. Get rid of the Commission and the other gravy train of lawyers in UCHR.
    Scotland has had its own law system for centuries and it seems even the Nat sis have no trust in it.

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  11. I'm not an unqualified fan of the EU currently, but I don't want to be dragged out on a Tory agenda with a Tory government ditching everything decent about the EU and wrangling over what might or might not be Scotland's entitlement in the new GB. An independent Scotland's relationship with the EU is another matter altogether.

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  12. Look at how WM treats us in the EU. Can you imagine the situation of an isolated London outside the EU. It's a scary prospect for Scotland being run like Ireland in the 1900s. We are effectively a pariah state to them.

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  13. Here's an honest question for the "I'd like to stay so the EU protects us from the Tories" crowd:

    What EU laws currently on the books actually do anything to stop the Tories' ideological mass murder of the poor and vulnerable in this country?

    (Or any other positive, practical effect you can think of other than the free movement, work and trade zone)

    I once thought that this whole EU-out concept was to get out from under the EU treaty of human rights, since Westminster is effectively ignoring it anyways.

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    1. Glasgow Working Class 2February 22, 2016 at 12:52 AM

      The Tartan Tory Nat sis are more right wing than Thatcher in fact Sturgeon is Maggie's seed.
      There was a time when the Nats opposed cuts in services and freezing council tax and were for taxing the rich now they are putting flowers on Maggie's grave in praise. The Nat sis are the worst political scum to rule Scotland since Edward 1.

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    2. Ho hum. Have you finished delivering the Tank Commander's leaflets yet? It's the only thing to do - Better Together and all that.

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  14. I haven't changed my opinion. Still likely to vote remain. I suspect most people will be like me in not considering the issue that deeply. When i do think of it then for me the benefits of being in the EU include some safeguards against the intentions of our own UK government. The benefits of being out the EU would seem to apply more to giving freedom of action to the boss class than benfitting the rest. As for immigration I couldn't care less.

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  15. If you're travelling outside of the EU and there is no UK embassy, you are entitled, as an EU citizen, to consular protection from the embassy of any other EU member state.

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    1. Glasgow Working Class 2February 23, 2016 at 12:25 AM

      You just have to read your passport rules for protection, simple dead easy.

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